HomeThe ShuffleWant to Win the Lottery? It’s Not All About Luck

Want to Win the Lottery? It’s Not All About Luck

Winning the lottery isn’t the impossible dream, experts say—if you play the odds.

Who hasn’t fantasized about winning the Mega-Millions or Powerball jackpot, holding that big check, and telling your boss to shove it?

It’s a universal dream, and according to some lottery “experts,” it’s not out of reach, as long as you play strategically.

The most famous of the aforementioned experts was Richard Lustig, who won seven state lotteries between 1993 and 2010 and wrote a book titled—what else?—How To Increase Your Chances of Winning the Lottery.

While some have debunked Lustig, saying he never revealed how much he had to fork over to win that cool million, it’s worth it to take a look at his tips, and pointers from other strategists.

In no particular order:

  1. Pick your own numbers. Quick Picks will reduce your odds to “their worst,” Lustig said. Choose 10 numbers and play them consistently.
  2. Research your numbers, and avoid sequences that have already won. Don’t choose consecutive numbers (1-2-3-4-5), or similar numbers. These apparently will reduce your chances to win.
  3. Play less popular games. With less people playing, your odds will be automatically higher. By the same logic, don’t get Lotto fever. When jackpot numbers hit the stratosphere, everybody jumps in, and your odds of winning dwindle accordingly.
  4. Don’t play the numbers of your birthday, or your kid’s birthday, or your Shih Tzu’s.Everybody does it. That means a bigger pool of players are choosing numbers from 1 to 31. Choose higher numbers to boost your odds.
  5. Join a lottery pool—or start one. Do the math. Spend $10 at $2 per game, and you’ve played five games. Throw $10 into a pool of 100 people, and you’ve played 500! Your luck just increased a hundredfold.
  6. Play regularly and responsibly. Obviously, you can’t win if you don’t play. But always stay within your budget.

Everyone wants to get rich quick, but winning the lottery is still a long shot. The odds of bagging a life-changing jackpot are about 1 in 175,000,000—way higher than your chances of being killed by a falling vending machine (1 in 125,000,000); becoming president (1 in 30,000,000); picking a perfect NCAA bracket (1 in 13,000,000); or dating a supermodel (hey, these odds are actually pretty good—1 in just 88,000).

That said, in spite of the odds, somebody’s gotta win! Try these strategies, and you could be that somebody, and enter the high tax bracket of your dreams.

Go Ahead, Scratch Your Itch!

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